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Old 02-07-10, 11:57 AM
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TurbineBlade
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Did you adjust the limit screws correctly? This usually means getting the chain onto the smallest chainring and the largest cog to set the low limit, and the largest chainring and smallest cog for the high limit.

If those are not the problem, you might have a sticky cable that you might want to replace, or lubricate, etc. Check your rear derailleur shift cable to see if it is hanging up along the housing or some part of the frame (like the slotted piece under the bottom bracket).

Also if you're shifting friction, make sure you have enough cable tension that the shifter can actually get the derailleur to move up onto your lowest 4 gears. Usually you have to tighten the barrel adjuster on the rear derailleur with downtube shifters, or loosen and anchor the cable a bit tigher on the derailleur.

Usually downtube shifters are pretty simple to work with.
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